Guidelines on PDA Forensics

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1 Draft Special Publication Guidelines on PDA Forensics Recommendations of the National Institute of Standards and Technology Wayne Jansen Rick Ayers

2 NIST Draft Special Publication Guidelines on PDA Forensics Recommendations of the National Institute of Standards and Technology Wayne Jansen Rick Ayers C O M P U T E R S E C U R I T Y Computer Security Division Information Technology Laboratory National Institute of Standards and Technology Gaithersburg, MD August 2004 U.S. Department of Commerce Donald L. Evans, Secretary Technology Administration Phillip J. Bond, Under Secretary for Technology National Institute of Standards and Technology Arden L. Bement, Jr., Director

3 Reports on Computer Systems Technology The Information Technology Laboratory (ITL) at the National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST) promotes the U.S. economy and public welfare by providing technical leadership for the Nation s measurement and standards infrastructure. ITL develops tests, test methods, reference data, proof of concept implementations, and technical analysis to advance the development and productive use of information technology. ITL s responsibilities include the development of technical, physical, administrative, and management standards and guidelines for the cost-effective security and privacy of sensitive unclassified information in Federal computer systems. This Special Publication 800-series reports on ITL s research, guidance, and outreach efforts in computer security and its collaborative activities with industry, government, and academic organizations. National Institute of Standards and Technology Special Publication Natl. Inst. Stand. Technol. Spec. Publ , xx pages (Mon. 2004) CODEN: XXXXX Certain commercial entities, equipment, or materials may be identified in this document in order to describe an experimental procedure or concept adequately. Such identification is not intended to imply recommendation or endorsement by the National Institute of Standards and Technology, nor is it intended to imply that the entities, materials, or equipment are necessarily the best available for the purpose. U.S. GOVERNMENT PRINTING OFFICE WASHINGTON: 2002

4 Acknowledgements The authors, Wayne Jansen and Rick Ayers from NIST wish to express their thanks to colleagues who reviewed drafts of this document. In particular, their appreciation goes to Murugiah Souppaya and Tim Grance from NIST, Karen Kent from Booz-Allen-Hamilton, Barry Grundy from NASA Office of Inspector General, Rick Mislan from Ferris State University, and Eoghan Casey from Knowledge Solutions LLC for their research, technical support, and written contributions to this document. The authors would also like to express thanks to all others who assisted with our internal review process, including Susan Ballou from NIST s Office of Law Enforcement Standards and those who contributed input during the public comment period.

5 Table of Contents TABLE OF CONTENTS...V LIST OF FIGURES... VII LIST OF TABLES...VIII EXECUTIVE SUMMARY INTRODUCTION AUTHORITY PURPOSE AND SCOPE AUDIENCE AND ASSUMPTIONS DOCUMENT STRUCTURE BACKGROUND DEVICE CHARACTERISTICS PALM OS POCKET PC LINUX GENERIC STATES FORENSIC TOOLS PALM DD (PDD) PILOT-LINK POSE PDA SEIZURE ENCASE DUPLICATE DISK (DD) CUSTOM TOOLS PROCEDURES AND PRINCIPLES ROLES AND RESPONSIBILITIES EVIDENTIAL PRINCIPLES PROCEDURAL MODELS PRESERVATION SEARCH RECOGNITION DOCUMENTATION COLLECTION ACQUISITION UNOBSTRUCTED DEVICES...34 v

6 6.2 OBSTRUCTED DEVICES TANGENTIAL EQUIPMENT EXAMINATION AND ANALYSIS LOCATING EVIDENCE APPLYING TOOLS REPORTING REFERENCES...50 vi

7 List of Figures Figure 1: Generic Hardware Diagram...5 Figure 2: Palm OS Architecture...8 Figure 3: Windows CE Architecture...10 Figure 4: Linux Architecture...13 Figure 5: Generic State Diagram...15 Figure 6: ROM/RAM Storage Assignments...35 Figure 7: Alternative ROM/RAM Assignments...36 vii

8 List of Tables Table 1: An Overview of Representative PDA models...5 Table 2: PDA Forensic Tools Table 3: Action Matrix...30 Table 4: Interoperability Among POS Tools...33 Table 5: Cross Reference of Sources vs Objectives...44 viii

9 Executive Summary Forensic specialists periodically encounter unusual devices and new technologies normally not envisaged as having immediate relevance from a digital forensics perspective. Existing forensic guidelines lean heavily on classical computer forensics. The reason for most guides to limit the breadth of content is: technology changes at such a rapid pace. This guide provides an in-depth look into Personal Digital Assistants (PDAs) and explains technologies used in PDAs and their impact on the procedures for forensic specialists. It covers the characteristics of three families of devices: Pocket PC, Palm OS, and Linux based PDAs and the relevance of various operating systems associated. This guide deals with situations encountered during the collection and examination of digital information present on PDAs for preserving valuable evidence as well as available tools for acquisition and examination. The objective of the guide is twofold: to help organizations evolve appropriate policies and procedures for dealing with PDAs, and to prepare forensic specialists to deal with new situations when they are encountered. The guide is not all-inclusive nor is it a mandate for the law enforcement community. However, from the principles outlined and other information provided, agencies should nevertheless find the guide helpful in setting policies and procedures. The information in this guide is best applied in the context of current technology and practices. Every situation is unique, as are the experience of the forensic specialists and the tools and facilities at their disposal. The judgment of the forensic specialists should be given deference in the implementation of the procedures suggested in this guide. Circumstances of individual cases and International, Federal, State, local laws/rules and organization-specific policies may also require actions other than those described in this guide. As always, close and continuing consultation with legal council is advised. ES-1

10 1. Introduction 1.1 Authority The National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST) developed this guide in furtherance of its statutory responsibilities under the Federal Information Security Management Act (FISMA) of 2002, Public Law NIST is responsible for developing standards and guidelines, including minimum requirements, for providing adequate information security for all agency operations and assets; but such standards and guidelines shall not apply to national security systems. This guideline is consistent with the requirements of the Office of Management and Budget (OMB) Circular A-130, Section 8b(3), Securing Agency Information Systems, as analyzed in A-130, Appendix IV: Analysis of Key Sections. Supplemental information is provided in A-130, Appendix III. This guide has been prepared for use by Federal agencies. It may be used by nongovernmental organizations on a voluntary basis and is not subject to copyright, though attribution is desired. Nothing in this guide should be taken to contradict standards and guidelines made mandatory and binding on Federal agencies by the Secretary of Commerce under statutory authority, nor should these guidelines be interpreted as altering or superseding the existing authorities of the Secretary of Commerce, Director of the OMB, or any other Federal official. 1.2 Purpose and Scope This guide provides basic information on PDAs, aspects desirable for law enforcement investigations and considerations when subjecting a PDA to an examination and analysis. The guide focuses mainly on the characteristics from the following families of PDAs: Pocket PC, Palm, and Linux based PDAs. It also covers provisions to be taken into consideration during the course of an incident or investigation. It includes discussion on evidence preservation, device identification, content acquisition, documentation and reporting. The guide is intended to address common circumstances, involving computer based electronic data from PDAs and associated electronic media that may be encountered by organizational security staff and law enforcement investigators. It is also intended to compliment existing guidelines, which focus mainly on equipment seizure, and delve more deeply into issues related to PDAs and their examination and analysis. Procedures and techniques presented in this document are a compilation of the authors opinions and references taken from existing forensic guidelines. The publication is not to be used as a step-by-step guide for executing a proper forensic investigation when dealing with new technologies such as PDAs or construed as legal advice, its purpose is to inform readers of various technologies and potential ways to approach them from a forensic point of view. Readers are advised to apply the recommended practices only after consultation with management and legal officials for compliance with laws and regulations (i.e., local, state, federal, and international) that pertain to their situation. 2

11 1.3 Audience and Assumptions The intended audience is varied and ranges from response team members handling a computer security incident to organizational security officials investigating an employee-related situation to forensic examiners involved in criminal investigations. The practices recommended in this guide are designed to highlight key principles associated with the handling and examination of electronic evidence, in general, and PDAs in particular. Readers are assumed to have a basic grounding in classical computer forensics involving individual computer systems (e.g., personal computers) and network servers. Because of the constantly changing nature of handheld devices and related forensic procedures and tools, readers are expected to take advantage of other resources, including those listed in this guide, for more current and detailed information. 1.4 Document Structure The guide is divided into the following nine sections: Section 1 (this section) describes an authority, purpose and scope, audience and assumptions, and document structure. Section 2 is an overview on PDAs, including an overview of common operating systems and generic operating states. Section 3 discusses present-day PDA forensic tools and with which types of devices they work. Section 4 provides general information on procedures and principles that apply to PDA forensics. Section 5 discusses considerations for preserving digital evidence associated with PDAs. Section 6 examines the process of acquisition of both obstructed and unobstructed devices, as well as common types of peripheral equipment. Section 7 outlines common sources of evidence on PDAs and the features and capabilities of tools for examination. Section 8 discusses the reporting of findings. Section 9 contains a list of references used in this guide. 3

12 2. Background The digital forensic community faces a constant challenge to stay on top of the latest technologies that may be used to reveal relevant clues in an investigation. Personal Digital Assistants (PDAs) are commonplace in today s society, used by many individuals for both personal and professional purposes. PDAs vary in design and are continually undergoing change as existing technologies improve and new technologies are introduced. In the event that a PDA is encountered during an investigation, numerous questions arise: What should be done? How should the PDA be handled? How should valuable or potentially relevant data contained on the device be examined? The key to answering these questions is an understanding of the hardware and software characteristics of PDAs. This section provides an overview of the hardware and software capabilities of Palm, Pocket PC, and Linux-based PDAs. The overview provides a summary of general characteristics and, where useful, focuses on a particular model or software version that best illustrates key features of such products. Developing an understanding of the components and inner workings of these devices (e.g., PC vs. PDA memory) is a pre-requisite to understanding the criticalities involved when dealing with digital devices. PDA memory is volatile (i.e., RAM) and requires power to maintain data unlike a personal computers hard disk. Handheld device technologies are changing rapidly, with new products and features being introduced regularly. Because of the fast pace with which handheld device technologies are evolving, this discussion represents a snapshot of the handheld area at the present time. 2.1 Device Characteristics Most types of PDAs have comparable features and capabilities. They house a microprocessor, read only memory (ROM), random access memory (RAM), a variety of hardware keys and interfaces, and a touch sensitive, liquid crystal display. The operating system (OS) of the device is held in ROM. Several varieties of ROM are used, including Flash ROM, which can be erased and reprogrammed electronically with OS updates or an entirely different OS. RAM, which normally contains user data, is kept active by batteries whose failure or exhaustion causes all information to be lost. Compact Flash (CF) and combination Secure Digital (SD) 1 /MultiMedia Card (MMC) 2 slots support memory cards and peripherals such as a digital camera or wireless communications card. Wireless communications such as infrared (i.e., IrDA) or Bluetooth may also be built in. Figure 1 presents a diagram representing the generic core components of most PDAs. The latest high-end PDAs are equipped with system-level microprocessors that minimize the number of supporting chips and considerable memory capacity, giving the user the performance of a desktop machine. 1 The Secure Digital home page can be found at: 2 The MultiMediaCard home page can be found at: 4

13 ROM JTAG RAM JTAG Power Manager Memory Controller LCD Controller IrDA Processor Codec CF SD Core Blue tooth USB UART Power Cradle Connector Figure 1: Generic Hardware Diagram Different devices have different technical and physical characteristics (e.g., size, weight, processor speed, memory capacity). Devices also have expansion capabilities (e.g., I/O and memory card slots, device sleeves, and external hardware interfaces) that can occur between devices. Furthermore, PDA capabilities are sometimes combined with those of other devices such as cell phones, global positioning systems, and cameras to form new types of hybrid devices. Table 1 highlights the general characteristics of selected Palm, Pocket PC (re-branded as Windows Mobile in 2003), and Linux PDA models, which highlight this diversity. Characteristics of a wider range of PDAs can be found on manufacturer and vendor Web sites, as well as product review sites. 3,4 Table 1: An Overview of Representative PDA models Tungsten T2 ipaq Pocket PC H5555 OS Palm OS Windows Mobile 2003 Premium Processor 144 MHz TI OMAP MHz Intel XScale Dual core 192 Mhz DSP PXA-255 enhanced ARM-based Zaurus SL-5600 Linux Embedix v2.4.18, Qtopia v MHz Intel Xscale PXA For an online comparison of older PDA models see: 4 For PDA product reviews and prices of current models see 5

14 ROM 8 MB Flash 48 MB Flash (17 MB 64 MB Flash available for user storage) RAM 32 MB 128 MB 32 MB Size 4.0 x 3.0 x " x 3.3" x.63" 6.2 x 3.2" x 0.8" Display 320x320 TFT Active Matrix, 65,536 colors 240x320 Color reflective thin film transistor (TFT) 480x640, 4 diagonal, 65,536 colors, CG Silicon Input Touch-screen, Handwriting recognition, soft keyboard, voice LCD, 65,536 colors Touch-screen, Handwriting recognition, soft keyboard, voice, 5- way navigation button LCD (transflective TFT) Touch screen, Handwriting recognition, QWERTY keyboard Wireless IrDA, Bluetooth IrDA, Bluetooth, Wi-Fi IrDA Card Slots SD/MMC slot SD/MMC slot Type II CF slot SD/MMC slot Type II CF slot Expansion None Optional expansion sleeves for PCMCIA cards, CF cards, and accessories (mini type A) Battery 1 fixed, rechargeable Lithium Ion Polymer 1 removable, rechargeable Lithium Ion Polymer Expansion jacket with CF slot and battery USB 1.1 host connector 1 removable, rechargeable Lithium Ion Regardless of the PDA family, all devices support a set of basic Personal Information Management (PIM) applications, which provide Address Book, Appointment, Mailbox, and Memo Management capabilities. Most devices also provide the ability to communicate wirelessly, review electronic documents, and surf the Web. PIM data residing on a PDA can be synchronized with a desktop computer and automatically reconciled and replicated between the two devices, using synchronization protocols such as Microsoft s Pocket PC ActiveSync protocol and Palm s HotSync protocol. Synchronization protocols can also be used to exchange other kinds of data (e.g., individual text, images, and archive file formats). Information not obtainable directly from the PDA can often be retrieved from a personal computer to which the device has been synchronized. 2.2 Palm OS Palm established itself as the early leader in the PDA market. Early Palm OS devices use 16- and 32-bit processors (e.g., 32-bit processors process instructions on numbers that are 32-bits long) based on the Motorola DragonBall MC68328-family of microprocessors. More recent devices use StrongArm and XScale microprocessors. 5 Older Palm devices tend to be driven by alkaline batteries instead of lithium-ion batteries, used in new models. The Palm OS is stored in ROM, while applications and user data are stored in RAM. Add-on utilities also exist to back up PIM data (e.g., Address Book, Datebook, ToDo, Memo Pad) onto available ROM. Palm OS system software logically organizes ROM and RAM for each Palm powered handheld into one or more memory modules known as a card. Each memory card can contain ROM, RAM, or both. A handheld device can have one card, multiple cards, or no cards. The main suite of applications provided with each Palm powered handheld is built into ROM. This design permits the user to replace the operating system and the entire application s 5 For Palm OS and device related material see 6

15 suite by installing a single replacement module. Additional or replacement applications and system extensions can be loaded into RAM. The Palm OS divides the total available RAM store into two logical areas: dynamic RAM and storage RAM. Dynamic RAM is used as working space for temporary allocations, and is analogous to the RAM installed in a typical desktop system. The remainder of the available RAM on the card is designated as storage RAM and is analogous to disk storage on a typical desktop system. Because power is always applied to the memory system, both areas of RAM preserve their contents when the handheld is turned "off" (i.e., is in low-power sleep mode). All of storage memory is preserved even when the handheld is reset explicitly. As part of the warm boot sequence (i.e., a soft reset), the system software reinitializes the dynamic area, and leaves the storage area intact. The entire dynamic area of RAM is used to implement a single heap that provides memory for dynamic allocations. From this dynamic heap, the system provides memory for dynamic data such as global variables, system dynamic allocations (TCP/IP, IrDA, and so on, as applicable), application stacks, temporary memory allocations, and application dynamic allocations. As part of the cold boot sequence (i.e., a hard reset), in addition to reinitializing the dynamic area, the storage area is erased [PPC04]. The Palm is arranged in memory chunks called records, which are grouped into databases. The Palm OS databases can be thought of as files. The Palm file format (PFF) conforms to one of the three types defined below: Palm Database (PDB) A record database used to store application data, such as contact lists, or user specific data. Palm Resource (PRC) A resource database similar to the PDB. The applications running on Palm OS are resources containing application code and user interface objects. Palm Query Application (PQA) A Palm database containing world-wide-web content for use with Palm OS wireless devices. With Palm OS, because all applications share the same dynamic RAM, they can interfere with each other s data. Buffer overflow attacks are also easily implemented [Ket00]. The latest Palm PDAs offer two expansion modes providing an increase in functionality: the Palm Universal Connector System and Palm Expansion Card Slot. The Universal Connector System allows GPS receivers, wireless modems, keyboards, and other peripherals to interact with the device via a USB enabled connection. The Palm Expansion Card Slot accommodates MultiMediaCard (MMC) and Secure Digital (SD) cards. MMC card modules are removable solid-state memory of similar size and design to SD memory Cards. Besides memory, SD cards may also incorporate other types of peripherals such as wireless communications or camera cards. The Palm OS is divided into the following layers: Application, Operating System, Software API, Hardware Drivers, and Hardware. Figure 2 illustrates the relationship between layers. The software Application Programming Interface (API) provides software developers with a degree of hardware independence, allowing applications to execute under different hardware environments by recompiling the application. Developers have the freedom to bypass the API and directly access the processor, providing more control of the processor and its functionality. 7

16 However, this comes at the expense of increased security risks due to malicious applications. The Palm OS does not implement permissions on code and data. Therefore, any application can access and modify data [Kin01]. Figure 2: Palm OS Architecture Other handheld device manufacturers have licensed the Palm OS for use in their own line of equipment. Versions of the Palm OS can be divided into three ranges: those before version 4.0, those from version 4.0 to 5.0, and those from 5.0 onward to version 6. A number of vulnerabilities were identified in versions before 4.0 and subsequently fixed. In particular, the user login password was shown to be vulnerable and easily reversed [Kin01]. Version 4.0 also introduced initial support for filesystems on removable memory cards. Versions before 5.0 execute only a single program at a time, while 5.0 and after support multiprocessing. Versions 5.0 and above switched emphasis away from the DragonBall family of microprocessors to the StrongArm family 6, with emulation support of legacy applications previously developed for DragonBall. Palm OS devices offer built-in security features to provide protection for individual entries/records and the ability to lock the device when the user turns the device off. Locking individual records allow users to mark records as private and not be displayed unless the proper password is provided. However, records marked private can be accessed, read, and copied through other means [Ket00]. The ability to lock a device requires users to enter the correct password before access is granted to the application screen. In early versions of Palm OS, weak password encoding is easily reversed and the encoded block of data that contains the password during a HotSync can be intercepted [Kin01]. Third party products exist that provide users with the ability to encrypt sensitive data and enhance overall security [Pmd02]. Palm devices include an RS232-based Palm Debugger providing source and assembly level debugging, entered by issuing a keystroke combination. Two interfaces exist that monitor the serial port for communication. Console Mode interacts with a high-level debugger and is used mostly for manipulation of databases. Debug Mode is typically used for assembly- and register-level debugging [Kin01]. 6 For Palm OS and device related material see 8

17 2.3 Pocket PC Pocket PC grew out of the success of the Palm PDA and the realization that a market existed for similar devices that had more processing power and networking capabilities. Microsoft entered the handheld device market with the Windows CE (WinCE) operating system, which was later augmented with additional functionality to produce Pocket PC (PPC). 7 Windows CE supports a multi-tasking, multi-threaded environment, inherited by Pocket PC. Applications running under Windows CE are protected from interfering with each other through memory management [Ket00]. Windows CE and PPC have evolved in tandem from versions WinCE 2.0/PPC 2000 to WinCE 3.0/PPC 2002 to WinCE 4.1/PPC 2003 (PPC 2003 was re-branded as Windows Mobile 2003), through a number of feature upgrades. For example, early versions of ActiveSync were susceptible to brute force password attacks and DoS attacks when synchronizing over a network [Meu02] and subsequently corrected. Vulnerabilities present on earlier devices may provide a means of bypassing authentication mechanisms allowing forensic investigators to have access to data. Pocket PC runs on a number of processors, but primarily appears on devices having Xscale, ARM, or SHx processors. Various Pocket PC devices have ROM ranging from 32 to 64MB and RAM ranging from 32 to 128MB. PIM and other user data normally reside in RAM, while the operating system and support applications reside in ROM. An additional filestore can be allocated in unused ROM and made available for backing up files from RAM. One or more card slots, such as a Compact Flash (CF) or Secure Digital (SD) card slots, are typically supported. Additionally, some manufactures provide expansion capabilities, such as extension sleeves or modules that allow other technologies to be incorporated. The majority of Pocket PC devices use a lithium-ion battery. In order to prevent data loss in the event that battery power is low the lithium-ion battery must be re-charged via the cradle, a power cable, or removed and replaced with a charged battery. The architecture of Windows CE is shown in the Figure 3 below [Ges03]. The services are grouped in a number of modules, which can be included or excluded when building an image for a specific target system. Everything from the bottom up to the programming and communications interfaces level is part of the operating system; above that are the applications. Due to the majority of the Windows CE operating system being written in the C language, the kernel is portable to different processors (e.g., Manufactures produce PDAs with different processors such as: Shx, StrongArm, XScale, etc.) by recompiling the code for a specific architecture. 7 For Windows CE/PPC device related material see 9

18 Figure 3: Windows CE Architecture The Original Equipment Manufacturer (OEM) Adaptation Layer (OAL) is the layer between the Windows CE kernel and the hardware consisting of a set of functions related to system startup, interrupt handling, power management, profiling, timer and clock. It allows an OEM to adapt Windows CE to a specific platform. An OEM must write the OAL for any custom hardware present. Like other operating systems, Microsoft Windows CE implements device drivers, whose purpose is to manage and interface with hardware devices. Device drivers link an OS and a device, making it possible for the OS to recognize the device and to allow communications to be established between hardware and applications. A device driver can be either monolithic or layered. Monolithic drivers implement their interface directly in terms of actions on the device they control. Layered drivers separate the implementation into two layers an upper layer, which exposes the driver s native or stream interface, and a lower layer that performs the hardware interactions. Network drivers are based on the Network Driver Interface Specification (NDIS) model used by Windows NT. Only Miniport drivers are currently supported. The Graphics, Windowing, and Events Subsystem (GWES) is the interface between the user, the application, and the operating system that contains most of the core Windows CE functionality. GWES is an integrated graphics device interface (GDI), window manager, and event manager. The GWES module is the most highly componentized portion of the Windows CE operating system and consists of two subgroups: User and GDI. User refers to the part of GWES that handles messages, events, and user input from keyboard and mouse or stylus. GDI refers to the part of GWES that is responsible for graphical output. The GDI is the GWES subsystem that controls how text and graphics are displayed. GDI is used to draw lines, curves, closed figures, text, and bitmap images. The generic term object store, refers to three types of persistent storage supported by Windows CE: file system, registry, and property databases. Standard Win32 functions provide access to the files and registry, while new Windows CE-specific API functions provide access to property databases and certain registry features. The subset of Win32 and other Microsoft APIs that have been implemented in Pocket PC allow a system to fulfill the requirements of an embedded PC application, yet keep the programmability similar to that of PCs. The maximum size of the object store is 256MB in Windows CE.NET. The object store is built on an 10

19 internal heap that resides in RAM, ROM, or both. The internal heap provides a transaction model that uses logging to ensure the integrity of the object store data. The Windows CE file system allows a file to be stored both in RAM and ROM. When a file stored in RAM has the same name as a file stored in ROM, the actual RAM file shadows the ROM file. A user who tries to access a shadowed file gains access to only the RAM version. However, when the RAM version is deleted, the ROM version of the file is accessible. This feature is useful for upgrading files that come with a device as ROM files. Property databases are repositories of information that can be stored, searched, and retrieved by associated applications. To reduce space, compression techniques are also applied automatically. These databases provide a common way to manage persistent information on the device. The Windows CE registry is a database that stores information about applications, drivers, system configuration, user preferences, and other data. The purpose of the registry is to provide a single place for storing all the settings for the system, applications, and user. The registry is always stored in RAM and consequently is volatile. If there is no registry available in RAM, Windows CE can regenerate a default one from a file stored in ROM. The Windows CE OS supports four types of memory: RAM RAM is allocated into two separate areas: Object Store and Program Memory. The partitioning of main memory can be controlled by the end-user via an application level control and can be adjusted without rebooting. A paged virtualmemory management system is used to allocate program memory. Expansion RAM is supported in addition to main system RAM providing users with extra storage. The Expansion RAM is mapped into virtual memory after a cold boot and appears identical in the virtual memory map to the OS as system RAM. ROM The ROM memory space contains miscellaneous data files like audio files, fonts and bitmaps. These are generally compressed and decompressed when brought into system RAM for usage. The ROM memory space also contains support for uncompressed executables, applications and DLLs for execute In Place (XIP) operation. The Windows CE OS allows individual elements to be designated as XIP or demand paged during the image build process. Persistent Storage Much of the support for persistent storage is oriented around removable storage cards. For example, files (executables, data, users files) stored in persistent storage are memory mapped into system RAM for use. Pocket PC devices offer users the ability to set a power-on password that can be made up of a 4-digit numeric or a stronger alphanumeric password up to 29 characters long. Additionally, users have the ability to set a timeout that locks the device when not in use for the pre-defined specified amount of time. If passwords are incorrect, to discourage brute force attacks each new attempt takes longer. If a password is forgotten, the only way to unlock the device is by performing a hard-reset and re-synching data. Some recent models of Pocket PC devices have integrated a fingerprint biometric for additional security that can be used in tandem with 4-digit or alphanumeric passwords. 11

20 2.4 Linux Pocket PC allows the hardware developer, system integrator, or developer to determine which services are incorporated in their Pocket PC version. Pocket PC devices do have the ability to incorporate trusted environments where the OS kernel verifies applications and libraries before loading them. Three possibilities exist: the software module may be trusted without restrictions, trusted with the restriction that no privileged function calls or registry access can be done, or not trusted at all [Aho01]. Pocket PC devices can have significantly different bootloader 8 functionality. The device manufacturer determines the range of functionality with two exceptions the bootloader must be able to load the OS and have the ability to upgrade to a more recent OS. Some early versions of Pocket PC devices provided documentation on specific key chord sequences (e.g., pressing buttons 2, 4, power button, and the reset button) that would boot into a specific mode known as Parrot mode. The device must be connected via the serial connector and a terminal emulator is used to establish communications with the bootloader and issue commands. Parrot mode has a rich command set that would allow register values to be set, display memory contents, set memory contents, display the virtual address mapping table, backup memory to storage cards (CF/SD), the ability to restore memory from storage, and many other operations. Linux, a popular open source operating system for servers, which is used on desktop computers, has also appeared on a number of PDA devices. Linux is a true multi-tasking, 32- bit operating system that supports multi-threading. Besides commercial distributions that come preinstalled by PDA manufacturers, Linux distributions are also available for a range of Pocket PC and Palm OS devices. The success of Linux-based PDAs rests on the open source model and its ability to engage the software development community to produce useful applications. The most common Linux PDA in the U.S. is the Sharp Zaurus. The first Zaurus model, the SL-5500, introduced a couple of years ago uses Embedix 9, an embedded Linux kernel from Lineo, and Qtopia desktop environment from Trolltech for the windowing and presentation technology. Embedix is based on a networked kernel with built-in support for WiFi, Bluetooth, and wireless modem technologies, as well as associated security and encryption modules. The device has a StrongARM processor, 16 MB of ROM, 64MB of RAM, and a 3.5-inch 240x320-pixel color LCD. As with Palm and PPC, the Zaurus power source is a lithium-ion battery. There are both Compact Flash (CF) and SD slots (the SD slot will also accept MMC). A small QWERTY keyboard is integrated into the device and becomes visible by sliding down the thumb pad and application button panel. Embeddix Linux refers to a commercial distribution. While most Linux distributions include the same utilities, libraries, drivers, and windowing frameworks, differences occur with what patches, modules, included utilities, and how the installation, configuration and upgrade is 8 The bootloader is responsible for loading the run-time image into memory and jump to the OS startup routine. 9 For more information on Embedix see 12

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